Bejan Saeedi is an MD-PhD student at Emory University. Prior to matriculating, he was a research technician for four years. During that time, the mentorship and guidance he received from faculty, post-docs, students and staff gave him both the desire and opportunity to pursue a career in academic research. Always astounded by the willingness of physicians, physician-scientists, and scientists to open their doors and discuss their experiences, Bejan sought a venue to preserve those stories and share them with the broader scientific community. With fellow MD-PhD students Joe Behnke, Carey Jansen, and Michael Sayegh, he started this podcast – Behind the Microscope – in August of 2019. Bejan completed his PhD in the lab of Dr. Andrew Neish in the spring of 2020 and is now preparing to begin his 3rd year medical clerkships. In his spare time he loves running, adventuring outdoors with his wife and dogs, and playing mandolin.
Joe is a fifth year MD/PhD student whose thesis research is focused on modeling traumatic injury in Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies) as a means to understand the long-term consequences of mild head injury. Joe is an Executive Producer and Co-Creator for Behind the Microscope, and is responsible for generating content and post-production. In his spare time, Joe is an avid golfer, amateur pizzaiolo and James Bond enthusiast. Be sure to check out his pizza adventures on Instagram @dr.pizzaiolo.
Carey is an MD/PhD student, occasional foodie, and new mom. In her PhD, she studies the mechanisms of immune infiltration and organization in human cancers. Carey is passionate about science communication, mentoring younger students, and helping foster a spirit of community and collaboration amongst aspiring scientists, physicians, and physician-scientists. She serves as an Executive Producer for Behind the Microscope, and focuses on outreach, social media, and communications for the podcast. In her spare time, you may often find Carey in the stands at an Atlanta Braves baseball game or adventuring her standard poodle, Smoltz!
Michael Sayegh is a fifth year MD/PhD student. As an Executive Producer of Behind the Microscope, Michael is responsible for generating content and scheduling interviews.
I am a PhD candidate at Emory University in the Immunology and Molecular Pathogenesis program. I am under the guidance of Dr. Rheinallt Jones studying how microbes can impact immune responses in the setting of colorectal cancer. I am passionate about mentorship and believe this is the greatest factor in whether scientists will become burnt out and leave academia. My goal in my career is to keep the conversation ongoing, because as a scientific community, we can always improve. Outside of science, I am a husband, ultra-runner, woodworker, and a garden enthusiast.
Nusaiba Baker was born in Fresno, California to a Mexican immigrant and an Iraqi immigrant. She attended the Johns Hopkins University, where she double majored in Neuroscience and Molecular and Cellular Biology. She was also accepted into the dual BS/MS program, where she received her Masters in Biology by the age of 20. Fascinated by research and inspired by the intellect and insight she saw in MD/PhD mentors at Johns Hopkins, Nusaiba decided to pursue an MD/PhD at Emory University. She completed her PhD in Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech in March 2020 dually advised by Dr. Edward Botchwey and Dr. Andrew Neish. Nusaiba is now back in her 3rd year of medical school, completing clinical clerkships. In her free time, she enjoys adventures with friends, walks on the Beltline, and having quarantine-friendly dance parties.
Brian is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and works as a Gastrointestinal Pathologist in Emory’s Division of Anatomic Pathology. As a physician-scientist with extensive training in gastrointestinal and Liver Pathology, Brian is interested in understanding how developmental signaling pathways, particularly ROS-related signaling pathways, influence epithelial homeostasis in the intestine and contribute to tumorigenesis. Brian is enthusiastic about academic medicine, and is passionate about engaging young students and trainees towards understanding the process of science so that they are equipped to drive future advances. When not in lab, or working in the hospital, Brian enjoys playing Baseball with his wife and two kids, playing guitar, eating Pizza, and jogging with friends.